My Friend is a Palestinian Bedouin: VIII. The Palestinians, the Israelis and the Dutch

My Friend is a Palestinian Bedouin: VIII. The Palestinians, the Israelis and the Dutch


Hofstede (2001) described Israel as a country with a diversity of cultural groups, and suggested that over the years there may have been value changes in this country, that are not necessarily reflected in his findings. He mentioned the value differences within Israel between Jews of Western and those of North African origin and the Arab population, the latter groups being more inclined to collectivism. As regarding the role of women, he related among others to the pressure for dual careers. Traditionally masculine functions are open to Israeli women, but to a greater degree than common in the United States, they are expected to become mothers and take care of the children. He referred to the exceptionally low level of power distance in Israel, which is comparable to those of North European countries. Furthermore, he suggested a link between Israel’s intense national conflict and its high level of uncertainty avoidance combined with a tendency to collectivism. This combination of value dimensions is comparable to that of several other countries in which there is relatively much internal conflict, like in Arabic speaking countries.

Within Israeli society there are several major conflicts. (Shimoni & Schwarzwald, 2003) described the situation as follows:

The conflict between religious and secular Jews, which originated in differing ideological standpoints, has spilled over to include territorial and resource issues. The conflict between the Western and Eastern ethnic groups, which originates in feelings of discrimination, has developed into cultural struggle. The conflict between Jews and Arabs, which originated in territorial struggle, has developed into a comprehensive struggle (p. 549)


Share this:

About the Author

Daniel WeishutDaniel J.N. Weishut, born in the Netherlands but living in Jerusalem, is a professional with a diverse background. He holds an MA in Clinical Psychology and an MBA in Integrative Business Administration, both from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and a PsyD in Clinical and Organizational Psychology from the Professional School of Psychology (Sacramento). He has about thirty years of experience in consultation and therapy with a wide variety of clients and issues, more than twenty years of practice in group facilitation, and over fifteen years of know-how in governance and management in various organizations. Daniel Weishut offers his services as a "Partner on the Way", while taking a world-view that people are diverse but equal. He works with a variety of clients, but his special interest is in work with those who have found themselves persecuted or otherwise in conflict with their social environment, because of their culture, identity or belief system. For example: migrants, expats, refugees, Holocaust survivors, soldiers, pacifists, and individuals from religious, cultural or sexual minorities. Daniel Weishut is a social activist and in this capacity he volunteers as Chairperson of the Israeli Association of Group Psychotherapy, as Member of the Membership Appeals Committee of Amnesty International and as forensic expert for the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel. He also is involved in raising awareness about the situation of Bedouins around Jerusalem; awareness which led among others to the writing of his dissertation "My friend is a Palestinian Bedouin: Challenges and opportunities in intercultural friendship".

View all posts by Daniel Weishut

Leave a Reply